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Dr Jean Harkins

Conjoint Lecturer

School of Humanities and Social Science (Linguistics)

Career Summary

Biography

Research Expertise
Linguistics

Qualifications

  • PhD, Australian National University
  • Bachelor of Arts (Asian Studies), Australian National University
  • Master of Arts, Australian National University
  • Graduate Diploma in Education, University of Canberra

Keywords

  • Semantics
  • Sermantics
  • Linguistics
  • Communication
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Applied Linguistics
  • Aboriginal Languages
  • Intercultural Communication

Languages

  • Spanish (Fluent)
  • Indonesian (Fluent)

Fields of Research

Code Description Percentage
200499 Linguistics not elsewhere classified 100
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Publications

For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.


Chapter (3 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2017 Harkins J, Kelly RF, 'Applying multilingual knowledge to decpiher an historical song of change', Recirculating Songs: Revitalising the singing practices of Indigenous Australia, Canberra, ACT : Asia-Pacific Linguistics, School of Culture, History and Language, College of Asia and the Pacific, The Australian National University, Hamilton, NSW 172-186 (2017) [B1]
2008 Harkins J, 'NSW contact languages', A Handbook of Aboriginal Languages of New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory, Muurrbay Aboriginal Language and Culture Cooperative, Nambucca Heads, New South Wales 402-412 (2008) [B1]
2001 Wierzbicka A, Harkins J, 'Introduction', Emotions in Crosslinguistic Perspective, Mouton de Gruyter, Berlin, Germany 1-34 (2001) [B1]

Journal article (5 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2018 Albadi NM, Harkins J, O Toole JM, 'Recent Reforms in Saudi Secondary Science Education: Teacher and Student Perceptions of Grade 10 Physics', International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 1-21 (2018)

© 2018 Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan Recent research in science education for learners whose first language is Arabic suggests that learning in the mother tongue can ... [more]

© 2018 Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan Recent research in science education for learners whose first language is Arabic suggests that learning in the mother tongue can reduce learner misconceptions, but there has been little research into the comprehensibility of science texts where Arabic is the language of instruction. This mixed-methods study describes the perceptions of substantial changes in science education, including translation of American science textbooks into Arabic, expressed by six grade 10 physics teachers and 360 grade 10 physics learners in two cities in Saudi Arabia. Factor analysis allowed themes emerging from the teacher interviews to be compared with underlying constructs from student questionnaire responses. Results reveal teachers¿ and students¿ concerns about adequacy of resourcing for the newly mandated student-centered style of learning, and language difficulties affecting comprehensibility of the textbook to support students¿ learning. These findings suggest that science education policymakers should consider all components of constructive alignment if they wish to achieve the goals of science education reform that they set for themselves.

DOI 10.1007/s10763-018-9881-3
Co-authors Mitch Otoole
2017 Albadi NM, O Toole JM, Harkins J, 'A preliminary study of the technical use of Arabic in Saudi secondary physics classes', Issues in Educational Research, 27 639-657 (2017) [C1]

© 2017, Western Australian Institute for Educational Research Inc. All rights reserved. English for specific purposes research reveals that learners at a variety of levels experie... [more]

© 2017, Western Australian Institute for Educational Research Inc. All rights reserved. English for specific purposes research reveals that learners at a variety of levels experience difficulty reading science text, sufficient to impede their acquisition of science understanding. However, little research exists regarding subject-specific language styles or reading difficulty in Arabic. Difficulties with specialised language may seriously impede the development of physics understanding by Saudi students. Remedial attempts may remain ineffective unless informed by a better understanding of specific readability issues. This quantitative study involved 80 female Year 10 students studying science in two cities in Saudi Arabia (Jeddah and Abha). A specialised cloze test based on the mandatory physics textbook was developed to identify language features of the passage that participating students found difficult. Findings reveal that (a) these Saudi students experienced greater difficulty in reading their physics book (28% conceptually correct responses) than that suggested by earlier work with English speakers of similar age (62% conceptually correct responses); and (b) Saudi student difficulties with grammatical categories form a distinguishable pattern, but the pattern differs from that indicated by earlier work with English-speaking student.

Co-authors Mitch Otoole
2016 Moskovsky C, Assulaimani T, Racheva S, Harkins J, 'The L2 Motivational Self System and L2 Achievement: A Study of Saudi EFL Learners', Modern Language Journal, 100 641-654 (2016) [C1]

©2016 The Modern Language Journal The research reported in this article explores the relationship between Dörnyei's (2005, 2009) Second Language Motivational Self System (L2M... [more]

©2016 The Modern Language Journal The research reported in this article explores the relationship between Dörnyei's (2005, 2009) Second Language Motivational Self System (L2MSS) and the L2 proficiency level of Saudi learners of English as a foreign language (EFL). Male and female participants (N = 360) responded to a questionnaire relating to the main components of L2MSS, the ideal L2 self, the ought-to L2 self, and the L2 learning experience, as well as learners¿ intended learning efforts. The participants¿ L2 proficiency was then measured with an EFL reading and writing test. Descriptive and inferential analyses of the collected data revealed¿as expected¿that the components of the L2MSS were a good predictor of the learners¿ intended learning efforts. However, the study also established that in this learner population these components were not consistently correlated with L2 achievement. The findings can be treated as evidence that self-reported motivation does not always have behavioral consequences.

DOI 10.1111/modl.12340
Citations Scopus - 5Web of Science - 3
Co-authors Christo Moskovsky
2016 O'Toole JM, Albadi N, 'Teacher perceived readability of Saudi school texts.', Canadian International Journal of Social Science And Education, 5 299-316 (2016)
Co-authors Mitch Otoole
2008 Harkins J, Makin L, Spedding SF, Whiteman PJ, 'Collaborative methods in early language and literacy research', CERC Occasional Papers, 1 4-15 (2008) [C2]
Show 2 more journal articles

Conference (3 outputs)

Year Citation Altmetrics Link
2010 Harkins J, Lissarrague A, 'Grammar meets ethics: difficult choices in endangered language renewal', Australian Linguistics Society Annual Conference ALS 2010: Programme and Abstracts, St Lucia, Qld (2010) [E3]
2008 Harkins J, 'Ethics, texts and power in linguistic research', Directions in Oceanic Research. Abstracts, Ourimbah, NSW (2008) [E3]
2001 Harkins J, 'Gender languages, gendered selves', 8th Interdisicplinary Gender Studies Conference, Ourimbah (2001) [E3]
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Grants and Funding

Summary

Number of grants 4
Total funding $214,410

Click on a grant title below to expand the full details for that specific grant.


20101 grants / $730

Australian Linguistics Society Annual Conference, (ALS2010), University of Queensland, St Lucia, QLD 4 - 7 July 2010$730

Funding body: University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts

Funding body University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts
Project Team Doctor Jean Harkins
Scheme Travel Grant
Role Lead
Funding Start 2010
Funding Finish 2010
GNo G1000777
Type Of Funding Internal
Category INTE
UON Y

20043 grants / $213,680

R.O.I. For the provision of research to be undertaken for the Learning Together (child and family literacy) Project$208,680

Funding body: South Australian Department of Education and Children`s Services

Funding body South Australian Department of Education and Children`s Services
Project Team Dr Peter Whiteman, Doctor Susan Spedding, Doctor Jean Harkins
Scheme Research Grant
Role Investigator
Funding Start 2004
Funding Finish 2006
GNo G0183618
Type Of Funding Other Public Sector - State
Category 2OPS
UON Y

Parent communication orienting infamts (8-12 months old) toward literacy$2,500

Funding body: University of Newcastle

Funding body University of Newcastle
Project Team Associate Professor Laurie Makin, Doctor Jean Harkins
Scheme Project Grant
Role Investigator
Funding Start 2004
Funding Finish 2004
GNo G0183445
Type Of Funding Internal
Category INTE
UON Y

Parent communication orienting infants (8-12 months old) toward literacy$2,500

Funding body: University of Newcastle

Funding body University of Newcastle
Project Team

Assoc Prof Laurie Makin

Scheme Unknown
Role Investigator
Funding Start 2004
Funding Finish 2005
GNo
Type Of Funding Internal
Category INTE
UON N
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Research Supervision

Number of supervisions

Completed7
Current5

Total current UON EFTSL

PhD1.68

Current Supervision

Commenced Level of Study Research Title Program Supervisor Type
2018 PhD Traditional Aboriginal Language and Song from Original Speakers and Songmen in NSW. PhD (Aboriginal Studies), The Wollotuka Institute, The University of Newcastle Principal Supervisor
2017 PhD Impact of Aboriginal English on Teacher Experience and Student Achievement in Secondary Science Classes PhD (Education), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor
2016 PhD Poor Reading Comprehension of Saudi EFL Students: Diagnosing the Causes and Suggesting the Prevention PhD (Education), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor
2012 PhD Science Literacy and Language in High School Physics in Saudi Arabia PhD (Education), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor
2011 PhD What Plants Can Say About Language Shift: An Investigation of Language Ecology in Ikpana, An Endangered Language of Ghana PhD (Linguistics), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor

Past Supervision

Year Level of Study Research Title Program Supervisor Type
2015 PhD The Influence of Religious and Cultural Attitudes on Engagement Among Learners of English as a Foreign Language in Saudi Arabia PhD (Linguistics), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Principal Supervisor
2015 PhD Dreaming the Keepara: New South Wales Indigenous Cultural Perspectives, 1808-2007 PhD (Aboriginal Studies), The Wollotuka Institute, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor
2015 PhD The L2 Motivational Self System Among Saudi Learners of English PhD (Linguistics), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor
2014 PhD Effects of Acculturation Factor on Saudi Arabian English Language Learners: A Contextual Comparison Study PhD (Linguistics), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Principal Supervisor
2012 PhD Factors Determining the Saudi Learners' Difficulties in Attaining EFL Vocabulary PhD (Linguistics), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Principal Supervisor
2012 PhD Social Factors Affecting the Acculturation of Young Saudi Children in the Australian Context PhD (Linguistics), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Principal Supervisor
2007 PhD Terror, Trauma and the Eye in the Triangle: The Masonic Presence in Contemporary Art and Culture PhD (Humanities), Faculty of Education and Arts, The University of Newcastle Co-Supervisor
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Dr Jean Harkins

Position

Conjoint Lecturer
School of Humanities and Social Science
Faculty of Education and Arts

Focus area

Linguistics

Contact Details

Email jean.harkins@newcastle.edu.au
Phone (02) 4921 5179
Fax (02) 4921 6933

Office

Room MC122
Building McMullin Building
Location Callaghan
University Drive
Callaghan, NSW 2308
Australia
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